The very low density lipoproteins of cholesterol-fed rabbits

A study of their structure and in vivo changes in plasma
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      The lipoproteins with density less than 1.019 g/ml (VLDL) of rabbits made hypercholesterolemic by cholesterol feeding were fractionated by gel filtration. The proportion of the two fractions obtained (VLDL-1 and VLDL-2) was found to be dependent on the degree of hypercholesterolemia. Significant differences in the percentage composition, size and flotation rate of the two fractions were found but not in their apolipoproteins. By injecting into control animals the two VLDL fractions with their cholesterol moiety labelled with radioactive carbon, it was found that their rates of disappearance from plasma were different. No radioactivity was detected in plasma one hour after the injection of the VLDL subclass made up of the larger particles (VLDL-1). At shorter times, cholesterol injected as VLDL-1 was found associated with VLDL-2. However, no radioactivity was present as VLDL-1 when labelled VLDL-2 was injected. The cholesterol moiety of VLDL-l was more easily extracted by shaking with hexane than that of VLDL-2 or LDL. The results are discussed in terms of the possible relationships between the structural properties of the abnormal lipoproteins, their physiochemical stability and metabolic fate.


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